Visited palvelus – ritual event last night at TeaK by invitation of Matilda Aaltonen. The event was three hours long and required intensive physical engagement. The group had designed a contemporary faux-ritual which was rooted in existing ceremonies exercised by various religious and other spiritual orders. The group had attended some ceremonies during the rehearsal phase and their show was framed as an open-source/mishmash ritual, built from elements copied from exiting ceremonies. This approach, the costumes we were invited to wear and pompostrous choreographies we were thrown into, felt kitschy. The kitchiness helped me to immerse in the experience! During the event we danced to techno in a space hut and exercised meditation/yoga breathing techniques. The event ended with a communally prepared supper.
The artwork was a protest against recent political efforts which seek to turn art into a social service or a tool for social wellbeing. In such plans the primary intent of art is to ease work related stress and build motivation. “Palvelus-ritual” worked very well as a protest! It claimed that if art is politically forced to serve the wellness in the public, a natural result of this process is that it becomes a faux-spiritual holistic ritual. In this future KELA (the social insurance institution offices) would have shamans as consultants and guests would have to perform spiritual dances to receive welfare benefits.
I’m preparing a 20 min speech for Hollo-institutes spring seminar on utopian-art-education by invitation of Maaretta Riionheimo (Whom I met through KOM-theater Vuosaari project). I’m working on a manifest on speculative new-material pedagogy and pushing animals to the mix too: Adjunct Professor The Awaited Son is in the game! I’ll be on stage in Gloria before professor Eeva Anttila (TeaK) and emeritus professor Kari Uusikylä. A tough mix to crack with mere artistic merits. I’ll work the crowd with pictures of horses, it never fails.
Concerning teaching.. I’ve been working actively with a group of five graduating students from the Kankaanpää Art School. I’ve been in periodic contact with them from early autumn onwards. Meetings have been organised on skype and in Helsinki. The group is very hard to reach via email and I don’t know how their plans are working out. Art students don’t know how to use email (also offered them the opportunity to look me up on snapchat, whatsapp and skype etc. but they remain distant).
Currently preparing to meet Otto Karvonen concerning a Vuosaari related art effort.